Branding Africa conference at the University

On the 31st of May, Malmö University was honored to host two ambassadors from Africa, H.E. Dr Joseph Sang from Kenya and H.E. Zaake Kibedi from Uganda, and Brig. General Emeldah Chola from the Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Energy and Water Development in Zambia at STORM.

Around 25 researcher and international students from Malmö University participated together with our African guests in a two hour Round Table Dialogue with the theme ”Learning Together for Sustainable Innovation”, led by senior lecturer Magnus Johansson.

Branding Africa - Round Table discussions
Branding Africa – Round Table discussions

The topics approached were :
(1) Challenges and visions for urban sustainability
(2) Communication for social change
(3) Leadership and education as drivers for social change
(4) Societal transformation through socialinnovation.

It was emphasised that collaboration, education, communication, leadership, and investments, all play a pivotal role in realising an innovative and sustainable future outcome. The Branding Africa roundtable discussion brought many ideas and visions for African countries and Swedish perspectives to the fore. It also highlighted the challenges that are facing many African countries. The call for increased funding to enhance exchange and mobility of researchers and students between Malmö University and African universities is strong but needs to be addressed in relation to the risk of “brain drain” from African countries.

The challenges are many and they transcend national borders, which is why collaboration in education, research and innovation, between different stakeholders is a must, in order to achieve sustainable solutions.

It is extremely valuable that Malmö University already has a great number of researchers involved in African collaboration. We see therefore additional need for supporting crossdiciplinary projects and targeting of global challenges. 
 

Cecilia Christersson
Pro-Vice-Chancellor Global and Challenge Based Learning

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